The value of crowd forecasting for government and industry 

By Cultivate Labs on March 04, 2024

Cultivate supports government national security communities and multinational organizations in implementing crowdsourced forecasting. This methodology builds a cycle of information, in which experts can tap into the collective intelligence of their organization to bolster decision analysis.

In practice, crowdsourced forecasting involves aggregating ongoing, probabilistic forecasts and rationales about future events/risks from a large group of people to generate real-time signaling in the form of a "crowd forecast".

The outputs of this process include crowd forecast trends and alerts, qualitative data that contextualizes the forecasts and surfaces contrarian viewpoints, and measurement of forecasting accuracy and improvement over time.

Crowdsourced forecasting reinforces existing analytic processes and creates a “challenge environment” that encourages continuously reassessing analytic conclusions prompted by the feedback loop from ongoing crowd forecasts. Here are some of the benefits we’ve seen of organizations implementing this process:

  • Quantifies judgments, which surfaces areas of consensus and disagreement, weak signals, and contrarian thinking;
  • Generates actionable trends and early warning about risks and departure from the status quo with updated forecasts over time;
  • Drives transparency and accountability and removes organizational siloing through broad participation;
  • Develops forecasting as a strategic capability, improving critical judgment and exposing biases through ongoing performance feedback and practice;
  • Solicits diverse, outside perspectives which can reduce or challenge biases; and
  • Creates proprietary insights that can be a competitive advantage. 

Focus areas: How crowd forecasting is used

Cultivate’s clients use crowdsourced forecasting to optimize business processes and increase the rigor of analysis and decision making in the following areas:

  • Risk assessment: Quantify the likelihood and size of impact of risks in order to prioritize and measure perceived effectiveness of mitigation strategies.
  • Culture: Proactively generate signals about culture trends and issues needing to be addressed, and evaluate the future success of strategic efforts.
  • Portfolio management: Forecast the likelihood of program success and other key performance indicators in advance, and use insights to build consensus or highlight disagreement in resource allocation decisions.
  • Early warning signals: Create a cluster of the right questions about key events impacting your organization to generate early warning signals that give you decision advantage.
  • Research analysis: Challenge research assumptions and analytic models using crowdsourced forecasts as an alternative and more diverse outside perspective.
  • Demand planning: Tap the teams who are closest to understanding customer demand and the factors that will influence demand to both inform and create alternative perspectives.

Client examples

Below are some examples of Cultivate’s methodology and forecasting platform in action:

Facing a variety of uncertain and external factors, these agencies and companies are better equipped to strategize, plan, and mitigate risk with Cultivate’s crowd forecasting methodology.

We invite you to read more about Cultivate Labs and our enterprise technology, Cultivate Forecasts. If you’re interested in learning more about how crowdsourced forecasting can improve your strategic decision-making, get in touch with us at [email protected]

Cultivate Labs crowdsourced forecasting fundamentals